I remember one day, while sitting on my lunch break back when I worked in IT at UPenn, I happened to sit near a guy, non-Muslim, who oversaw me reading my Qur’an and we struck up a conversation. In summary, he stated he wasn’t religious because he didn’t, “believe in a man up there in the clouds”. I replied that while I did believe in God I also rejected the notion of the Creator being “a man in the clouds” or a man at all. we must never forget that some people are much closer to Islam than they even know. Their rejection of God being a man is in many ways a confirmation of half the shahadah (Testimony of Faith). They need only confirm illa’Allah (no deity except God!) and of course Muhammad is His messenger.
Dr. Shadee Elmasry posted something on his Twitter feed that reminded me not only of that conversation but also the important need for Muslims to precisely articulate what Islam professes, and simply because we believe in God or the Creator in no way implies we believe as others do. We must struggle to combat the straw-man argument that “all religions are the same”. Indeed they are not.
1 Everything that has a beginning must have a cause.— Dr. Shadee Elmasry (@DrShadeeElmasry) January 18, 2019
2 The universe had a beginning.
3 Therefore the universe must have a cause that itself had no cause.
Time, space, matter, cause & effect all at one point did not exist and then came into existence. They were created. Their creator must have existed before them, and therefore could not have been subject to them.— Dr. Shadee Elmasry (@DrShadeeElmasry) January 18, 2019
We call this doctrine, tanzih or transcendence. So next time someone says you believe in some man in the sky, tell them actually no that’s not what we believe at all.— Dr. Shadee Elmasry (@DrShadeeElmasry) January 18, 2019